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    a sestina

    Dissected, chest sliced open, my heart
    pumps life. I hand it to you, the man
    who receives my impractical gifts.
    I am troublesome, full of passion,
    try too hard to give the greatest love.
    You spurn this complicated woman.

    I can not be that simple woman,
    with garlands, not thorns, around my heart,
    that woman to whom you can give love
    with happiness. I desire you man-
    handling my bloody heart, a passion
    you do not understand. These strange gifts

    are ignored, thrown out, not seen as gifts
    wrapped in arteries, veins. This woman
    gives them. My attempts to show passion
    do not work. You deem my offered heart
    unnecessary sacrifice. Man,
    I only meant to share my life, love.

    Are my needs too fierce for you? My love,
    you deserve to be given these gifts
    with no expectations for a man
    who shares life with this puzzling woman.
    I want to give you this open heart
    with abandon, show you my passion.

    My appetite for romance, passion
    is insatiable. Your ardent love
    fills many holes in my bloody heart,
    yet I find I still grasp for more gifts
    to make me feel I am the woman
    you desire most, always, as a man.

    I want to learn how to give a man
    what he needs so he will make passion’s
    claims on me. Mark me as your woman,
    take this dripping heart offered with love.
    I am uncertain what other gifts
    to grant when you have my beating heart.

    You are the one man I want to love,
    on whom I bestow passion and gifts.
    I, the woman with a bleeding heart.